The Bonnie Plants Third Grade Cabbage Program~ Sign up today & help inspire the next generation of gardeners

When I was in the third-grade a tiny cabbage seedling forever transformed my life and sent me on the most remarkable path. That cabbage seedling was a part of the Bonnie Plants Third Grade Cabbage Program, a free program designed to inspire the next generation of gardeners. And inspire it did!

I am excited to share The Bonnie Plants 3rd Grade Cabbage Program is relaunching in 2021. I would personally like to invite third-grade teachers and parents across the country to sign up! It is a hands-on science lesson, students will learn about backyard ecology and plant life cycles by growing colossal cabbages and reaping hefty harvests. Students also vie for “Best in State” bragging rights — with a $1,000 scholarship awarded to one student in each participating state and perhaps be a life-changing moment for a third grader as it was for me.

Bonnie Plants has designed the 3rd Grade Cabbage program with COVID-19 safety in mind. With the added stress of learning during the pandemic – getting outside to connect with gardening is more important than ever for the physical and mental well-being of students.

Participating in the 3rd Grade Cabbage Program is completely free! Simply click on the link below to register your class or student by March 1st, 2021. The cabbages will be delivered by mail during your selected shipping window. After you’ve signed up, Bonnie Plants will follow up with instructions just in time for planting, growing, and harvesting, and a ton of other useful resources to help students learn and succeed along the way. For more information, visit: www.bonniecabbageprogram.com

Happy Growing,

Katie

Join Us for the First Katie’s Krops To-Go Dinner of 2021

Join us for our first Katie’s Krops Dinner of the new year on Thursday, January 7th. On the menu chicken parmesan over pasta with a tossed green salad and breadsticks fresh from the oven along with homemade desserts. Dinner will be served at 5 pm (earlier is possible). We will continue to host all of our dinners drive-thru for everyone’s safety. Our dinners are held at Summerville Baptist Church located at 417 Central Avenue in Summerville. We are truly blessed to partner with them to end hunger in our community. Please spread and the word that we are back to serve our neighbors in 2021.

Join Us for the August 13th Katie’s Krops Dinner

Join us, Thursday, August 13th, for our Katie’s Krops Dinner. We will be serving at 5 pm at Summerville Baptist Church located at 417 Central Ave. in Summerville, South Carolina. The meal is always free. If you live in Summerville and do not have transportation but are in need of a meal(s), please reach out to Katie@KatiesKrops.com, and we will make every effort to arrange delivery.

Pirates’ Patch Community Garden ~ West Carrollton High School, Ohio

Since 2016 students, age 14 to 19, at West Carrollton High have been growing with Katie’s Krops. They are having a tremendous impact on their community by sharing their harvest with St. Vincent de Paul Homeless Shelter.

“Not only have our students gained self-confidence, pride, and community service, they have gained a life long skill and can grow to produce for themselves and their families. We have learned the power of a seed. We gain pride and a sense of wellbeing,” shared Judi Brooks, Garden Coordinator.

Their garden is a place where connections are made when working side by side; students and adults share life stories and gain insight from one and other. A listening ear can open many doors. You never know what each day in the garden grows.  

Grow the Seeds of Hope & Change ~ Our New Seed Sharing Program for Children Out of School

In these challenging times, Katie’s Krops is spreading the seeds of hope and change. Let’s plant the seeds of change and help our neighbors in need as we enter unchartered territory. We want to share our seeds with children across the country. Now is an excellent time for our Southern friends to get outside and start gardening, and for our Northern friends to start seeds indoors.

We will send seeds to 400 people who email Katie@KatiesKrops.com to help us grow a better tomorrow. Please include your full name and mailing address when you email Katie@KatiesKrops.com with the subject line “Seeds of Change.” Gardening is an excellent activity for children who are out of school. We can be the change!

Please note, due to restrictions we cannot ship seeds outside of the United States.

Together we can grow hope! All it takes is one seed.

Join us in the Garden on Saturday, January 18th. Kick-off the New Year by Helping End Hunger.

Join us in the new Katie’s Krops flagship garden as we start construction on raised beds. In addition to building the new beds, we will have other garden tasks that we would love to complete to prepare for spring planting. We hope you can join us. This opportunity has been made possible by Youth Service America, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, and the Corporation for National and Community Service. This is an excellent time to earn garden hours to be able to volunteer at our Katie’s Krops Dinners.

When: Saturday, January 18th – 9 am to 1 pm

Where: The Katie’ Krops Flagship Garden is located at Crossroads Community Church, 505 Gahagan Rd. in Summerville, South Carolina. The garden is located at the rear of the church. Volunteers are required to wear closed-toed shoes. We recommend bringing a bottle of water and garden gloves in you have them. For our young volunteers, we always ask that an adult accompanies them during their time in the garden.

Please email Katie@KatiesKrops.com with questions. Thank you for your support.

Join us September 22nd for our Katie’s Krops Dinner

Our next Katie’s Krops Dinner will be held on Thursday, September 22nd. Everyone is welcome at our free garden to table dinnner. The meal will be served at Summerville Baptist Church, located at 417 Central Avenue in Summerville, South Carolina. Doors will open at 5:30pm and dinner will be served at 6pm. Our young crew has a delcious dinner planned. Please spread the word and help us end hunger in the Lowcountry.

Mark Your Calendar for the August Katie’s Krops Dinner

Join us on Thursday, August 18th for our free garden-to-table dinner. Everyone is welcome at our dinnner table. The meal will be served at Summerville Baptist Church, located at 417 Central Avenue in Summerville, South Carolina. Doors will open at 5:30pm and dinner will be served at 6pm. Please spread the word and help us end hunger in the Lowcountry.

The Next Generation Growing Hope for an End to Hunger

The Next Generation Growing Hope for an End to Hunger

What does food insecurity look like to you? Does it look like your neighbor? The person sitting next to you in church? Your child’s classmates? Food insecurity looks like all of us. Far too many families are one paycheck or one illness away from hunger. A choice between food, rent and utilities is a choice that many families are forced to make regularly, and appearances can be deceiving. At a very young age, I learned food insecurity does not always fit a stereotype, and I have made it my life’s mission ensure no family has to struggle to put food on their table.

Call it a happy accident, or perhaps fate stepping in to guide me down a path, but at just nine years old I learned that I could help to end hunger, but when I was in the third grade, I grew a forty pound cabbage in my backyard. I knew that my massive cabbage was meant for more than just my family, and I made the decision to donate to a soup kitchen after recalling the words that my father often shared; “We are very blessed to have a healthy meal every night. There are many families that struggle with hunger.”

I called on my mom to find a home for my cabbage and she found, Tri County Family Ministries. My story could have ended there, a nine year old doing a good deed by delivering a mammoth cabbage to a soup kitchen. But fate stepped in again when the director of the soup kitchen, Mrs. Sue, said the words that would transform my perspective: “It is not enough to just donate your cabbage, you need to come back, serve it and meet the people who you have helped.” My parents agreed and I returned to Tri County two days later.

I pulled on plastic gloves, grabbed a large ladle, sat on a wooden stool and served my cabbage, paired with ham and rice, to every guest. That day, my cabbage helped to feed 275 guests of the soup kitchen.

On that day I learned what the faces of hunger look like. I also realized that I had found a way to help end hunger. I could grow an end to hunger, one vegetable garden at a time.

It has been eight years since that transformative day. What started with a cabbage has grown into my not-for-profit organization, Katie’s Krops. Today, 100 youth-based gardens are growing across the United States, where the whole harvest is donated to feed families in need.

The mission of Katie’s Krops is to empower youth to start and maintain vegetable gardens of all sizes and donate the harvest to help feed people in need, wherever the need exists, and to assist and inspire others to do the same.

Youth across the country are now growing a healthy and fresh end to hunger. Fresh produce is filling food banks, soup kitchens and school food pantries in order to provide nutrient-rich produce to those struggling with food insecurity. While emergency food programs benefit from the fresh produce, the youth who grow the gardens benefit in many ways as well. Young Katie’s Krops growers gain an understanding of agriculture, nutrition, responsibility and budgeting. One of the most important skills they learn is that they too, at a very young age, can positively impact families struggling with hunger in their communities.

I receive notes from time to time…

Dear Katie,

Earlier this year, I had been laid off from work with a mountain of medical debt, and no food. Thankfully, I received help from you. Words cannot express how deeply grateful I am for your assistance to see me through. May God continue to bless you for all that you do. I will always be grateful.

Sincerely,

Terese

One hundred gardens is just the start. With help from volunteers and donors, we continue to grow, further our impact on food insecurity and allow children to be part of the solution to a global problem. Food preservation specialist Sub-Zero is supporting our efforts in a big way and you can, by sharing the hashtag #FreshFoodMatters on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Each time you do, Sub-Zero will donate $5, up to $25,000. That’s 25 new Katie’s Krops youth run gardens in 25 new communities that will benefit from greater access to fresh food.

Gardens are a wonderful solution to food insecurity because fresh food matters. The day I donated my cabbage, I learned how much a simple meal could change the course of someone’s day. I also learned that I, had the ability to make an impact. I wanted to, I needed to help. I hope you will help, too, by learning more about the impact of fresh food at FreshFoodMatters.com and by sharing why this issue is important to you, using #FreshFoodMatters.